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Hole in one: Behind the scenes of the 81° Italian Open presented by Regione Emilia-Romagna

3 min read

The Italian Open is one of the biggest events in the European golfing calendar, and the 81st edition promises to be spectacular. But delivering such a large-scale event involves coordination between multiple project teams, bringing together the very best solutions to deliver a result that is above par. That includes:

  • Project management, implementation, hospitality management;
  • Sales, marketing and sponsorship;
  • Original contents and digital activations;
  • Media rights management and media operations.

Project management, implementation and hospitality at sports events

Those who work in the sports industry know that after the event is before the event. Planning for the Italian Open, like other events, takes months and begins almost immediately after the previous one.

Six months before the event, the team starts by designing the commercial village, hospitality area and media centre. This involves detailed inspections with partners we select through a public tender. Transparency is key here, and it allows for best of breed services for our partner, the Italian Federation of Golf (FIG).

It then chooses the best suppliers and tee-off construction two months before the event. Our team is on-site, ensuring everything is built to perfection. This includes the selection of catering services and creating all the graphics for the structures at the Adriatic Golf Club.

The 2024 edition offers its own unique challenges. The new location of the competition means there were several unfamiliar elements which called for adaptability and flexibility. But the team’s dedication ensured everything was ready on time, earning appreciation from partners and clients.

Sales, marketing and sponsorship in golf

Like any sport, finding the right sponsors is crucial for the success of the Italian Open. The approach needs to work for brands, rights-holders and – most importantly – fans. Creating the best connection between all three means the best return on investment for all concerned.

As the FIG’s commercial advisor (a role Infront has had since 2017) we look for potential sponsors who fit well with the event and its values. Our marketing and sales teams work together to create comprehensive sponsorship packages. These include activations both on-site and beyond, allowing more people to experience the event – again, ensuring that the bond between brand and fan is strong and authentic.

With a new partner in the insurance industry, Howden, Infront has organised a talk for stakeholders and the media. The event will feature Christian Panucci, a football legend from Milan, Real Madrid, and Roma, coach, and golfer, alongside Golf Champion Emanuele Canonica and Howden CEO Federico Casini. They will discuss how to protect careers in golf, football, and other sports using international data collected by Howden.

Meanwhile, Technogym, the wellness fitness machine manufacturer, will showcase new products for the public in the commercial village. Trainers will also be available for specific training sessions for participants.

Original content and digital activations

Naturally, the event is only as good as what is delivered on the fairways and greens of the course. Creating engaging content is a big part of that. This includes the production of interviews with athletes, sponsors and stakeholders, capturing the excitement of the event. However, fan expectations now go beyond this, and involving talents and influencers allows us to deliver fresh, engaging content that caters to a wide range of audiences. This also goes some way to pleasing commercial partners, knowing that the event can draw the right kind of attention from the demographics it is hoping to reach.

This year, an influencer marketing campaign was launched: Infront and FIG - together with their partner Hellodì - involved communities and creators, with the aim of disseminating the golf movement in Italy by addressing a broad audience in terms of interests, practice of sport and age group. To do this, Torcha, a digital outlet specialising in bringing younger people to current events, helped share transversal themes involved its community on Instagram and TikTok. During the event, two creators - Marco Cartasegna and Giovane Tony - will tell Torcha’s audience about the peculiar, value-based and innovative aspects of the event, from an exclusive and backstage point of view, each with the own tone of voice and distinctive storytelling on Instagram and TikTok.

Media rights management and operations

Broadcasting the Italian Open to a wide audience is a key part of delivering a successful event. Sky Sport and Rai Sport currently have the rights and our operations team supports both broadcasters by managing production aspects and integrating with the main feed.

This strategic, creative and organizational approach is essential to the success of the Italian Open. By providing a full range of services and solutions, we help make this event a highlight of the sporting year.